Gov. Ridge Releases Funds For Paterno Library

HARRISBURG(Sept. 5)-- Gov. Tom Ridge today directed the Department of General Services to begin the bidding process for the new Paterno wing of the Pattee Library at the Pennsylvania State University's main campus in State College.

Funding for the $26.5 million project includes $14.8 million in state capital funds, including the $11.7 million in private gifts. The private gifts includes a $250,000 donation by Head Football Coach Joe Paterno and Sue Paterno.

"Improving educational opportunities in Pennsylvania has been a goal of my Administration," Ridge said. "And one of the ways in which we have looked to do this is by underscoring the tremendous contributions our libraries make to the fabric of Pennsylvania's educational system.

"There is no question that these state monies, in partnership with private donations, will be put to good use as Penn State moves to upgrade their already impressive library system."

Design of the library has been completed and approved. Once the bidding process and awarding of the contracts is completed, construction is slated to begin in early 1997.

PSU President Graham Spanier said the library construction project was a top priority for the university.

"We are grateful for the Governor's support of the Paterno Library," Spanier said. "In a time of limited state resources, this project is a great example of how private fundraising can be combined with state support to serve the best interests of the Commonwealth.

"The Commonwealth's financial commitment to the library, when added to the impressive support of thousands of donors, will allow Penn State to expand its already excellent library services."

The Paterno Library will house the Special Collections Library, including Rare Books Room, University Archives/Penn State Room, Historical Collections and Labor Archives, as well as reading rooms, exhibit areas, offices and workrooms.

The second floor will house the Social Sciences Library and the third and fourth floors, which will be expanded, will house the Business Library, part of the Social Sciences Library and the Life Sciences Library. The fifth floor will house the Education Library and administrative offices.

The design of the additions proposes to create an integrated look to the Library, bringing together the original 1939 Central Pattee, 1965 West Pattee, the 1949 Stack Building and the 1972 former East Pattee, now part of the Paterno Library. The glass facade of the East Pattee will be removed and stone and brick finishes with cornices and columnar windows will complement older parts of the building.

In addition, the project will improve the central facility which also serves Commonwealth Educational Campus libraries and other branch libraries on the University Park, and which serves public and academic libraries throughout the Commonwealth.


Bill Mahon (814) 865-7517 (office)